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 Sailors & Swine

All Hail The Drunken Liar, the debut album for the Melbourne quartet, takes Sailors & Swine’s clear affection for  country music’s blood-soaked narratives and twanging guitars and subsumes them in a bass-heavy post-punk squall not unlike that of The Birthday Party’s early years.  Opener ‘Holy Shark’ staggers violently into the room and loudly announces the band’s intentions with snarled baritone vocals, a kicking groove and jagged, distorted guitar twangs all swinging drunkenly from a bass-line of such commendable filthiness, it almost demands an immediate shower on the part of the listener. The group then proceed to explore their country/post-punk hybrid to full effect, from the darkly poetic and yearning ‘Miner’s Bride’, to the vicious, stomping swing of ‘The Birds’ and the unsettling blackened waltz of ‘Stranger’.  It’s a hybrid that works to surprisingly consistent effect, proving viscerally primal, slyly intelligent and disturbingly sordid all at once, leaving the entirety of All Hail The Drunken Liar suffused with a dark, faintly horrifying, psychedelic atmosphere. It’s an atmosphere which will endure as a tantalisingly uncomfortable memory long after the individual songs have concluded and which distinguishes All Hail The Drunken Liar as a very impressive debut.  

Matt O’Neill

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'All Hail The Drunken Liar'